Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Seeing women directing film

Okay, I graduated from MCAD and sadly some of what I experienced there felt like a direct reflection of the outside production world. Film is a male-dominated industry.
And that is not to say men are making all the choices, there are many women making choices in the industry and in some ways that makes it harder for me to accept.
Still, like with everything, it is about who you know. It is developed in a manner that is supportive of men, and really difficult for women.

Women in the production world are encouraged to be producers not directors or cinematographers. And if they go into these roles they are presented with many challenges; a crew who questions their direction and voice as well as criticism, much like we see with the current election and words regarding Hillary Clinton. Her hair, her clothes, a tear???
Is it that the people making the choices to hire/elect a woman in any role (director, president, board, instructor...) are so accustomed to the male perspective
that they can’t relate to something else? I’m not sure. But I am not willing to accept it.

I know it is difficult but I also know, thankfully, that there are hundreds of women out there doing it.
I think we should spend more time acknowledging and celebrating the work of women who are creating and trudging through. In the process of doing this we create positive role models.

As we all know, media is a very important form of storytelling and has become a way to connect in our culture . How can this connection be an authentic one if it is not represented by both genders as well as all races? It is critical that the number of women directors, presidents, board members, etc. are heard as well as recognized.

I remember reading an article once about Martha Coolidge, president of the Directors Guild of America. She talked about how discouragement starts in film school. She went to NYU’s film school in the 70’s and when she applied she was told she couldn’t be a director because she was a woman. Of course she was accepted and has since directed at least 40 works!

Maybe you are thinking, this was 30 years ago. But we are still seeing/hearing it happen. No, I do not know the protocol or selection process for the 13 directors selected for the class at MCAD. But I also don’t think it matters. We need to see a representation of both genders as well as all races. We each have a different story to share and in different ways. Not all women directors make “women” films and not all men make films about shooting and sex. I am tired of hearing about all the male prodigies, Quentin Tarantino, Wes Anderson... So let’s start celebrating female directors... And in honor of the MCAD class and the time frame or 1980 to present, I will reply to this post with some women directors from 1980 – 1995, many who continue their work today!


Pick a director from the list and find a work sample and a bit of information on her to post on the blog for discussion. Share the knowledge.

Compose a letter to MCAD... Maybe Amalia, as a current student, could help with the deeper exploration on this. Think about a piece you might make to explore these issues.

Take action, take action, take action!!
There are a lot of discussions happening but what are actions you can take???

Monday, April 21, 2008

Cops say copycat beating hits 12-year-old
Plot inspired by Florida scheme to videotape, post online beating, cops say
The Associated Press
updated 11:40 a.m. CT, Sat., April. 19, 2008
CLARKSVILLE, Ind. - A group of southern Indiana middle school girls videotaped the beating of a 12-year-old schoolmate and posted it on the Internet in an attack that authorities believe was inspired by a similar one in Florida, police said.

No charges have been filed and police said they have not yet interviewed all the girls, ages 12-14, who are students at Clarksville Middle School. The girls' identities were not released because they are juveniles.

The victim, who was treated for cuts and bruises at a hospital, was the daughter of a police officer, Police Chief Dwight Ingle said.

Police said the girls lured the victim to a parking lot near a warehouse in the town just north of Louisville, Ky., on April 12 and beat her. The violence was videotaped and later posted on the video-sharing Web site PhotoBucket, Ingle said, but it has since been removed.

The video begins with one girl arguing with the victim and escalates into a fight during which the 12-year-old is repeatedly hit in the head as other girls watch and laugh, police said.

Detective Darrell Rayborn said Thursday that police believe the plot was inspired by a similar scheme in which a group of teenage girls in central Florida posted online the videotaped beating of a 16-year-old victim. Parts of that video have been widely seen on TV and Youtube.

Clarksville school Superintendent Stephen G. Fisher said he did not anticipate disciplinary action against the students because the fight did not occur on school grounds.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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Saturday, April 19, 2008

Last night at dinner, my dad told me about a new class at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) where he teaches and where we often meet for TVbyGIRLS.  The course will be offered in the fall and is entitled "Great American Directors: The 80s to the present." Sounds like a good class, right? But here's what got him angry and which will probably also anger you: Out of the list of 13 directors that will be examined in depth in the course, directors like Quentin Tarantino, Alexander Payne and Clint Eastwood, there is not one woman!  It might be understandable in a course about early filmmaking to only include male directors.  But in a class about film from the 80s to the present, leaving out women directors is just unacceptable.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Okay... I know I'm not blogkeeper or whatever any more but... I am perplexed! My birthday is coming up and becasue we had a coupon for 50% off an item at Michael's for this week, I got to pick out my gift last night. So... I got a really nice easel I can minimize to use on a tabletop or take outside. Along with that, I wanted to get an artist's manikin. So... we went to go get one and guess what. If you want to buy a 12" wooden manikin of a female figure it costs $9.99. If you want to buy a 12" wooden manikin (same wood, same brand) of a male figure, it costs $16.99. What's the deal? Gender discrimination in art supplies??? Does anybody have any idea at all why this might like this? I could understand a maybe a dollar difference - maybe but almost twice the price? I think this sends the message that men are worth more than women. What do you think? Does anybody have any ideas why this might be?

Monday, April 14, 2008

I am trying to embed the video again. Hope this helps.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

When I saw this I wondered, what could have caused such brutality? What are your opinions? If people do this just because of a small dispute, what would they do if it was larger? I'm currious about what you think.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Did you hear about kids being strip searched at school? What do you think? Do you think police should be doing this instead of school officals? Do you think they should have parental permission? What are your thoughts?

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

ok...the question is:

how do you feel when you disagree but DON"T say anything. honestly. try it once for real and then report back.
Okay.. the baton has been passed to me... So, yea. Based on Maddy's question and the responses to you ALWAYS have to respond when someone is forcefully excerpting their own opinions? IS IT an ethical obligation to respond immediately all the time no matter what? I mean, I responded about why I sometimes don't speak up but it doesn't mean I never speak up. It was just why, when I choose not to respond, I don't. You can't possibly speak up about EVERTHING because you would get totally depressed! Isn't it more effective sometimes to let it go and then later, when the person isn't so passionate, speak up about how you feel?

Anyway... I think speaking up is more than what happens on a one to one basis. It is how we use our talents - whether that is speaking out verbally, writing or, like what we do with TVbyGirls, making videos - to educate other people about other opinions and facts they may not have considered. Also, a lot of times speaking seriously about topics is ineffective because people are conditioned to stop listening when the conversation gets serious. I think sometimes other approaches can be much more effective, like a video or like through using comedy etc. Check out what John Roy does with serious issues that he feels obligated to speak up about. I am interested in what you think.

Copy & paste this into your browser click on download clips and watch the one from the Tonight Show - that's my favorite.